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items tagged with RozzTox

Unearthing an Old Soul: Anna Ash, December 16 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2012-11-29 11:09:09

Anna Ash

The first impression of Anna Ash’s These Holy Days album is her distinctive, boldly quirky singing – soulful, pliable, and off-center, comfortable in breathy coos and pointed, high-pitched peaks. The title track features a piercing vibrato that’s ethereally visceral, both heavenly and a bit frightening. That’s the kind of voice that sounds like a natural extension of personality honed over a lifetime, an idiosyncratic instrument that nobody ever had the heart to constrain or correct.

But in a phone interview this week, Ash – who will be performing at Rozz-Tox on December 16 and recording a Daytrotter.com session the next day– revealed that she only discovered this marvel over the past five years, and she’s still exploring it.

“I didn’t really even know what my voice sounded like until I was like 19 or 20 years old,” she said. “ I was very shy about singing as a kid. I was never very good because I was so scared and so nervous.”


Read More About Unearthing An Old Soul: Anna Ash, December 16 At Rozz-Tox...


A Novelty, but Not a Novelty Act: Jeff Wichmann, October 26 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2012-10-18 11:01:10

Jeff Wichmann

In what is likely a statement of the painfully obvious, Jeff Wichmann said that his new album Ahhhhh!!!!! is “something that, as far as I can tell, no one’s ever created before, which is a koto/trumpet album with a lot of electronic blips and bleeps.”

And that’s not all. “I wanted to create an experimental rock album using the koto and the trumpet, as opposed to recording a koto album” of traditional compositions, Wichmann said in a recent phone interview. “Most koto players just do that. I found that limiting ... .”

Wichmann, a former Quad Citian (and former Reader employee) now based in Chicago, will be headlining the official release show for Ahhhhh!!!!! at Rozz-Tox on October 26, and it’s almost certain to be a unique experience. The trumpeter and koto player will be joined by guitarist Jeff Kmieciak (a bandmate in Tenki, which plans to release its final album next year) and, on at least one song, Konrad (the Quad Cities electronic-music artist whose remix of the title track is included on the new record).


Read More About A Novelty, But Not A Novelty Act: Jeff Wichmann, October 26 At Rozz-Tox...


Open to Discovery: Plume Giant, September 21 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2012-09-12 11:11:39

Plume Giant

When I spoke by phone with Plume Giant’s Nolan Green last week, the interview was scheduled for 10 a.m. in New York, where the folk-ish trio is based. I can’t remember the last morning interview I had with a pop, rock, or indie musician, as those breeds tend to shy away from morning engagements. So what self-respecting musician is up at that hour?

“I’m ... currently booking a release tour and working like crazy on the PR for it,” Green said. “I was actually already at a different meeting this morning, at 8 a.m.”

This detail is not necessarily important or telling, but it illustrates that these May graduates from Yale are actively charting their course, including setting specific goals for sales. So while you probably haven’t heard of the band – unless you attended its December show at Rozz-Tox, to which they’ll be returning on September 21 – its members are working to change that.


Read More About Open To Discovery: Plume Giant, September 21 At Rozz-Tox...


Setting the Scene: “Hello Quad Cities – Volume 1”
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2012-08-29 14:34:23

The first thing to stress about Hello Quad Cities – Volume 1 is that as compilations go, it’s strong from front to back and varied without feeling scattershot. The challenging format tends to result in well-intentioned hodgepodges of second-rate leftovers, but the tracks here – from 12 area bands – are all exclusive, and most were written specifically for the compilation. More importantly, while you might not find all of them to your liking, there isn’t a weak link.

The second thing to emphasize is that if you’re curious about the project, you shouldn’t dawdle. The release is available only on vinyl, and a mere 350 copies were pressed. (Each album includes a download code, but there will be no separate digital or CD release.) And they’ll only be sold at a pair of record-release shows, by the featured bands, and at Ragged Records.


Read More About Setting The Scene: “Hello Quad Cities – Volume 1”...


Elusive but Enticing: Blues Control, September 9 at Rozz-Tox
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Music

Category: Feature Stories

2012-08-29 11:51:07

Blues Control

If you haven’t heard of the instrumental duo Blues Control, as an introduction let me try to describe the first two tracks from its Valley Tangents album, which was released in June.

“Love’s a Rondo” is a jazzy, piano-based tune with one of the keyboard lines often matched by a fuzzy guitar whose frayed edges serve as a gentle contrast. The rhythms are laid-back and slightly exotic, and there’s the feel of unhurried, purposeful improv.

“Iron Pigs” starts with beats followed by majestic, cheesy keyboards followed by scratchy, aggressive noise followed by a piano played on the left side. When it emerges, the lead guitar is expressive yet concise, and memories of that agitated opening quickly melt away.

The band will perform at Rozz-Tox on September 9, and, in an interview earlier this month, Lea Cho described its sound as “instrumental psych rock.”

That’s as brief a description as you’ll get, but it’s probably more instructive to repeat some of the more verbose attempts. TinyMixTapes.com wrote that Cho and Russ Waterhouse were “an anomaly to me for ages, and listening to their records only made things worse. Their particular mysticality is created with a deeply abstracted series of layers that end up feeling sublimely confounding alongside the various swoons and gritty feelings of transcendence ... .”


Read More About Elusive But Enticing: Blues Control, September 9 At Rozz-Tox...





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